Car Accident Property Damage How-to Guide: Salvage Value

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The Car Accident Property Damage: How-to Guide, curated by Andrew Kryder, Chicago car accident attorney and the founding partner of The Kryder Law Group, LLC Accident and Injury Lawyers, is an invaluable resource designed to assist individuals navigating the aftermath of a non-injury car accident.

This comprehensive guide, delivered in an accessible video format, is designed to empower people with the information they need to protect their rights and interests when dealing with insurance companies and repair shops in the wake of an accident with vehicle damage.

In this segment of the guide, Andrew Kryder explains salvage value (also known as a car’s assessed value, residual value, scrap value, or break-up value). This information will better equip you to negotiate with insurance companies if your vehicle is declared a total loss after an accident.

The Value of an Asset: the Salvage Value of your Car

Andy begins, “Salvage value refers to the value of the vehicle as it sits there, even though it’s damaged or considered totaled. It still has a value of some sort—maybe not much—but something.”

Your Asset’s Salvage Value to the Insurance Company

“Now, if you decide to retain your vehicle,” he continues, “the insurance company is entitled to a credit for the estimated value, whatever that salvage value may be.”

Keeping Your Totaled Vehicle

“To put that into an example: assume that your car is worth $10,000. It’s ruled a total loss by the insurance company, but you want to keep the car.”

“Maybe you’re going to repair it yourself, maybe it has sentimental value. Whatever the case, you’ve decided to keep it.”

“The insurance company only has to make you whole again. They have to give you the equivalent to $10,000.”

“So if the salvage value of the vehicle is $1,000 and the total value of the vehicle is $10,000, and you are retaining the car in your driveway, the insurance company gets a credit.”

Your Vehicle’s Estimated Salvage Value

The Salvage Value of your Car Infographic

“It works out like this: $10,000 is the value. You’ve already got $1,000 in the value of the car as it sits there totaled, so the insurance company is going to give you $9,000 more. It adds up: you’ve got a total of $10,000, and you’ve been made whole again by the insurance company.”

Close up image of damage to two crashed cars
Car Accident Property Damage How-to Guide: Salvage Value
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